Matt Manzanares to Defend Flyweight Title Against Alexandre Pantoja at RFA 18

By Tristen Critchfield Aug 19, 2014
Matt Manzanares is 3-2 under the RFA banner. | Marshall Boyce/

RFA 18 now has a new headliner, as Matt Manzanares will defend his flyweight strap against Alexandre Pantoja Passidomo on Sept. 12.

The promotion announced the new bout on Tuesday night. Manzanares was originally scheduled to face Joby Sanchez in the evening’s main event, but plans changed when Sanchez got the call to compete at UFC Fight Night “Henderson vs. dos Anjos” on Saturday.

RFA 18 takes place at the Albuquerque Convention Center in Albuquerque, N.M., and also includes a bantamweight clash between Ulysses Gomez and Abel Cullum. The main card will be televised on AXS-TV beginning at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.

Manzanares is 3-2 with RFA overall, most recently capturing the promotion’s vacant 125-pound crown with a split verdict over Junior Maranhao on April 11. The Black Dragon Martial Arts representative has finished six of his seven career triumphs inside the distance.

The 24-year-old Pantoja is enters the bout on a seven-fight winning streak. The Nova Uniao product’s last defeat came at the hands of current UFC talent Jussier da Silva at Shooto “Brazil 16” in June 2010.


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